June 2004

Special Report: Process Control and Information Systems

Improve processing of 'opportunity crudes'

Consider these options to minimize adverse impacts when upgrading low-priced crudes

Green, K., Baker Petrolite Engineered Solutions Group

?Opportunity crudes? typically require more intensive processing to yield high-quality products due to high levels of naphthenic acids, sulfur and metals. These crudes vary greatly in quality as does the quality of refined products produced from such feeds. The benefits from low-priced raw materials are balanced against capital investments for processing units and higher consumption of energy and additives. These crudes can impact plant operations and equipment if not managed properly. However, refiners can seize profits by processing these ?cheap? crude oils. The key is ensuring that operations has identified the short- and long-term risks to the facility. The impact from acidic crude

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